By Karissa Tunis
Our family loves hanging out at the pool, and could literally spend all day (and all evening) in the water! But, I am not a fan of a lot of the typical water toys. Any toy that has a hole to squirt water usually ends up in the trash within a few weeks as I begin to see the mildew build-up inside.
So I am always looking for alternatives. I also like to find items that can be played with in multiple ways, or in multiple places. This allows us to keep a separate special bag of toys for outings. I look for items that could possibly be used at the beach, in the sand, in the water, at the playground, in the dirt, and so on.
Thankfully I have also found that my children actually prefer non-pool toys too! Here is a list of a few of our random favorites that stay in our special toy/pool bag:
- Little spray bottles—they have fun spraying, and I enjoy not getting soaked by a water gun
- Paint brushes—kids love painting “water lines” on the pavement and watching it dry
- Hard little animal toys—my kids LOVE animals! So the hard little animals that you can buy are awesome! They might be a little expensive (several dollars per animal) but they hold up. Whether it’s in the dirt, the mud, the sand, or the pool, these animals go everywhere with us.
- Barbie Mermaids—these are always a big hit with my daughters friends, so we have several we keep in the pool bag
- Cheap plastic cups—little kids love sitting on the pool steps and pouring water between the cups. It’s also great for developing hand-eye-coordination
- Plastic Easter Eggs—kids love filling these up, watching them sink to the bottom, and hiding their small toys inside
- Squid Divers—my kids love playing with these as animals, but the older two love diving in the pool for these as well
- Pool noodle slings—great for just floating and relaxing, but not difficult to climb into like a lot of pool rafts
Well… the last two are actually meant for the pool, but you get the idea! Look through your child’s toys and your kitchen cabinets before heading to the pool next time to see what ideas you can uncover!
Karissa Tunis is the co-owner of the parenting website, AdoreThem.com. Adore Them strives to share positive, practical advice and resources to help you find joy in your own parenting journey!